NEW YORK – The owner of a limousine company in the crash that killed 20 people in upstate New York on Saturday afternoon was Monday identified as Shahed Hussain, a Pakistani immigrant, who is currently out of the United States, according to American media reports citing police officials.
New York State Governor Andrew Cuomo said the modified limo that crashed in the quaint town of Schoharie was not even supposed to be on the road.
He said Prestige Limousine, which Hussain owns, “has a lot of questions to answer” after the deadly crash. “In my opinion, the owner of this company had no business putting a failed vehicle on the road,” Cuomo said.
Moreover, the driver, Scott Lisinicchia, 53, “did not have the appropriate driver’s license to be operating that vehicle,” Cuomo said on Monday as authorities stepped up the probe to find out what caused the tragedy.
Official records cited by news reports also show Prestige Limousines, the company that owns the limo, has been cited for 22 violations in the last 24 months, CBS News reported.
On Monday, Prestige Limousine company said it was investigating what caused Saturday’s crash and had met state and federal authorities. A lawyer for the company wouldn’t comment further.
Twenty people were killed in Saturday’s crash, including the driver and two pedestrians. Among the victims were four sisters and three of their husbands. They were celebrating one woman’s 30th birthday.
The birthday party guests were riding in a 2001 Ford Expedition that was converted into a limousine.
Authorities are now examining when and how the vehicle was converted and what caused this tragedy.